Treble Bleed on the McCarty 594, who has done it?

Discussion in 'Electric Instruments' started by Ironwolf, Feb 24, 2018.

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  1. Ironwolf

    Ironwolf I'm a Dog! I do Dog Things!

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    I use the volume control on most of my guitars to subtly dial in the gain as needed.

    The McCarty 594 volume is one of the worst ones I've had for killing or losing the treble, totally changing the sound and EQ.
    so I'm really convinced I need to put in a treble bleed circuit, but I certainly want to do it carefully.
    I'm worried that I might affect the coil tap sound too much, because that seems to be a well-designed circuit very functional.
    I think I just need it on the bridge pickup so I'll just start their.

    pretty easy experiment, but I'll start with the 180 picofarads capacitor that PRS favors.

    but if anyone's done it what learnings or results are applicable to the 594 circuit. do we think the resistor in parallel is necessary or useful? Controls the rate of or taper speed of the bleed across the range of motion.
    I'm assuming Les has probably done it with those x-ray eyes that see through everything.
    [​IMG]
     
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  2. garrett

    garrett Not a New Member

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    I'm VERY tempted. It'll work fine with the coil split. Better actually because treble loss is worse in split mode with the stock wiring.
     
  3. eclecticsynergy

    eclecticsynergy PRS user since '87

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    I know 594s have the LP control layout, but do they use 50s style wiring? If not, that may be worth trying- all it involves is swapping which lug of your volume pots the tone controls draw from. Can sometimes make for a significant reduction in treble loss as you roll off the volume.

    That said, I'm a fan of the standard PRS treble bleed arrangement. Just thinking that a 594 might deserve a more vintage approach.
     
  4. garrett

    garrett Not a New Member

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    They do not. I've also been tempted to do the 50's wiring. After all, that's how the guitars that inspired the 594 were wired.
     
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  5. rmg471

    rmg471 New Member

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    You know, I have noticed this same thing. Please keep us posted on what you do.
     
  6. Rider1260

    Rider1260 New Member

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    I know of a killer 594 that is without pickup ;)
    I would love nothing better than to make it less vintage and more like my old lester, I had it wired to do all kinds of stuff ( Out of phase etc )
    Thinking VB/HFS with then normal PRS wiring ( 180 pf on the Vol and 33 pf tone ) possibly loose the bone nut for a standard PRS nut or a 513 scolloped nut
    just need to rob a bank or something
     
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  7. rmg471

    rmg471 New Member

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    I did it last night on my soapbar 594. Helps a ton. I need to spend more time verifying that you can still get “as warm” of a tone with it installed. It definitely makes the tone control more usable. I pretty much leave it wide open now because so much treble goes away when rolling off the volume. I constantly work both the volume and tone on my Cu24.
     
  8. Ironwolf

    Ironwolf I'm a Dog! I do Dog Things!

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    okay I'm a little bit confused, you put a capacitor (size) across the middle and Center lug of your bridge volume, to create the classic treble bleed circuit, or possibly it sounds like perhaps you tried the 50s wiring?
    just trying to get clear what happened and what the results were.
     
  9. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    Hahaha! Actually, I haven’t. I use a buffer and a Pettyjohn EQ pedal to dial in the treble if I need a little more.

    As a studio rat, I’m all about EQ.
     
  10. BrianC

    BrianC more toys than talent

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    I would definitely do it. My SCT needed one and I added the 180pf and I love it.

    My SC 594 had the LTs but I sold them, I am planning on getting a set of Suhr Aldrich pups and will look into the cap at that time. I may also do one volume and two tone set up with one dummy knob. It just works for me - simplicity.
     
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  11. rmg471

    rmg471 New Member

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    I put a .001uF cap on both volume pots, just as you suggest. I’m going to try it on my non-Soapbar SC594 this week. It does exactly what you think it would. Roll off volume, tone doesn’t change.
     
    #11 rmg471, Feb 25, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2018
  12. Ironwolf

    Ironwolf I'm a Dog! I do Dog Things!

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    what about guitars that you buy new and have the treble bleed. do you leave them be, and/or find them somewhat useful?
    Or do you take them out, as needed. that is a cute kid isn't it, I think that might actually be Paul Reed Smith.
     
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  13. rmg471

    rmg471 New Member

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    Treble bleeds are all personal preference, but I did reach a final verdict. Here are my findings, YMMV:

    I ended up using the normal capacitor value that PRS typically uses in all the guitars besides the 594s, which is a 180pf capacitor. The 1000pf (.001uF) cap just made both my Soapbar and my "normal" SC594 too brilliant/shrill.

    I took the caps and crimped each leg to a copper alligator clip and then clipped the whole assembly onto the volume pots of each guitar. This accomplished 1 major objective, which was not to modify the original wiring. I wanted to keep the guitars "original." If i ever decide I don't like them, I just squeeze the clips and take them out. No soldering necessary.

    Overall, the Soapbar has much more spank now; you can definitely get into burly tele territory with those P90s. I think it really made that guitar come alive. On the normal SC594 with the 58/15LTs, the effect is more subtle, even though it's the same value cap. It's definitely noticeable, it just didn't change the character of the pickups as much, which I'm fine with, because I love those pickups. It makes the middle pickup position much more usable, much more 335-like, at least to me. Both guitars are actually seeing their tone knobs being turned now. Before, I never touched them. Now, the tonal variation on each guitar is even broader.

    These guitars sound great going into my Carr Mercury V. You can really hear the differences between the Antiquity P90, 58/15LT, and the 85/15 in my CU24. You could hear it before, but it DEFINITELY makes the difference between the 2 singlecuts much more distinct.

    -Ryan
     
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  14. LSchefman

    LSchefman Hears Tones

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    I leave them. I like what they do.

    These days, I don’t buy gear that isn’t 100% perfect for me right out of the box. If it needs a mod, I’m going to pass and try a different model.

    The last guitar I felt might have benefited from a mod was my 1993 Artist II. And I haven’t had that one since 1998. It’s been a long time since I contemplated modding one of my PRSes.

    Again, however, I’m into using effects processors and pedals to tweak a tone for the needs of a track, and I do that a lot.
     
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  15. Tag

    Tag New Member

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    Killer guitars. My Artist II sent more R9s and Gibsons to Ebay than you can shake a stick at. Just a fantastic, huge, fat sounding guitar. My first PRS, and still one of the best.
     
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  16. Ironwolf

    Ironwolf I'm a Dog! I do Dog Things!

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    not to mention the weight, I have had 4 classic types (not weight relieved) they all ended up on eBay in that massive 12 pound range decent guitars that I could no longer pick up, my final last remaining one is fully chambered/weight relieved 8.0 pounds and it to sounds and plays quite amazing,
    however the 594 such an easy neck to play so comfortable I believe it is the fit and finish,partly I seem to be more accurate with all my bending on the 594, also 8.0 pounds. I've ordered a bunch of capacitors and resistors they won't be here till the weekend.
     
  17. Ironwolf

    Ironwolf I'm a Dog! I do Dog Things!

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    okay I got my capacitors and resistors last night, I don't need to go any further, first one that I put in does exactly what I wanted, I tried the PRS paradigm, the180 pF ceramic capacitor, no resistor, Result: from volume 10 to 5 you are just basically rolling off portions of the gain, EQ stays amazingly balanced, no excessive brightness for me, and again this is with the pearly gates pick up, I only did it to the bridge volume, seems to be no change in tone when the volume pot is on 10, as expected. and it did seem to give the tone knob more ability to interact, some hints of brightness were sculpted down with tone knob to perfection, it may affect some mids but in really nice way. like the Q is slightly moved with volume on 7. feels like I have a lot more control. the two knobs interact with each other in a nice way. still subtle no major changes. for example if I turn the tone knob slightly down too far I can roll theiis volume backup and regain some brightness with some extra gain, quite nice.

    I did read through some of the nitwit boards where they say putting a treble bleed on their guitar ruined their entire life, like they had to learn something new. LOL.

    I don't really use the neck pickup in high gain mode, very little demand on the volume knob when using the neck pickup for me, some fine-tuning use of it in the middle position, but it mostly is on 8,9, 10. so I skipped the capacitor on that for now, doesn't seem to be needed. I might try it later, so I can see why they invented the treble bleed circuit, 40 or 50 years ago, and it's been around ever since, very nice seems to work with the PRS circuitry on the 594.:)

    I also tried the Claude Van Damme cable, that is so subtle in my rig that I could not tell cable 1 from cable 2.
    I suspect it might show up in a studio setting.
    I mostly use the Monster white coily cables, I seem to trip less and fall on the ground and break my guitar neck and my person neck less.
     
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  18. Matte82

    Matte82 New Member

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    Glad I found this thread. Still loving my 594, but was having trouble with the neck pickup. I like clear chimey single coilish sounds in the neck. Mostly because that’s kind of my “clean” channel. I tend to set the amp for edge of breakup, with the neck pickup mostly clean and the bridge slightly crunchy. Then I can add overdrive/boost for even more goodness. The bridge pu is absolutely killer for this. With the coil tap I can even get a cleaner bridge sound that isn’t harsh. Loving that.

    But the neck had a bit too much output, even with it lowered down all the way. I know I went too far the first time haha. And rolling off the volume darkens it too much. Coil tapping helps a lot but still doesn’t get me there. So for now I plan on just adding the treble bleed to the neck. Any particular caps that are preferable? Is there really any reason to get the oil ones over the ceramic disc?
     
  19. Ironwolf

    Ironwolf I'm a Dog! I do Dog Things!

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    I ended up using just the flat orange ceramic capacitor, I think the different types are extremely subtle tonal differences, some players say they can tell the difference I would find it difficult to believe you can hear difference between types of capacitors or resistors.
    but I found these webpages to be extremely wonderful teaching tools. it's pretty cool because it's easy to swap out to you get what you want.

    this one's nice and easy to understand basic info
    http://drkevguitar.com/2016/11/24/treble-bleed-mod-roundup/

    this discussion is almost too complete
    https://www.electricherald.com/guitar-capacitors-tonecaps-guide/

    very nice summary guide to construction types and how they possibly affect tone if you have the best ears in the world.
    http://www.guitar-mod.com/rg_elec_cap.html

    good luck should work
     
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  20. Matte82

    Matte82 New Member

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    Thanks for the links. I was looking on amazon and found some silver mica ones. Not that I think I can hear the difference, but they come in a 10 pack and the ceramic ones are like a 50-pack. Not sure I will ever use 10, let alone 50 haha. I’ll report back once I’ve added the mod.
     

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